Ex-clusives: The ones that got away

Should you believe internet rumor, Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots is, allegedly, coming to the Xbox 360 in 2008. Even though producer extraordinaire Hideo Kojima once stated that MGSwas a Playstation franchise,often-irreverent weblog Destuctoid claims that Snake will slither onto the 360 after a delayed "exclusive" period.

Destructoid published the revelations over the weekend, and were immediately ordered to "cease and desist" telling everyone about it. Which, of course, suggests that it's either utterly false or all too true, and the PS3 is down one more apparently exclusive game.

Though, honestly, labeling a game "exclusive" means nothing these days. Just look at this gang of liberal-minded videogames, initially revealed as one-console titles before being outed as multiplatform trollops.

Assassin's Creed
Ubisoft's intriguing Medieval murder spree was definitely a PlayStation 3 exclusive. Definitely. Even if half the demos given at E3 2006 were played through by Ubisoft staff using Xbox 360 pads. And even if the internet was incessantly reportinga multiplatform release. Except, no! Surprise! It's actually on the 360 and PC too.

Fatal Inertia & Bladestorm: The Hundred Years War
Both of these Koei titles were confirmed as a PS3 launch-day games in Europe and exclusives for Sony's console. Until PS3 launched in Japan and the US, and Koei presumably didn't see the sort of potential audience it was hoping for, opting to bring the Wipeout-inspired racer and Dynasty Wars- in-European-clothing battler to the 360.

Announced at X06 and destined for the Xbox 360 and PC, Crossfire is the creation of Conflict developer Pivotal. Originally set for a 2007 release, Crossfire is now courting attention from the PlayStation 3, with a three-way launch pushed back into 2008.

Devil May Cry 4
Such a traditional PlayStation exclusive, DMC. Such an obvious PS3 exclusive. After all, Sony's bosom-buddy Capcom wouldn't flirt with the competition again after the momentary Resident Evil 4 dalliance, would it? Actually, it would - and Devil May Cry 4 will be launched on the Xbox 360 at the same time as the PS3 version.

Ace Combat 6
For as long as we can remember - more than a fortnight if we try hard enough - Ace Combat has been a PlayStation series (aside from that one GBA title). It's a PlayStation brand, almost. Until Ace Combat 6, that is, which is planned as an Xbox 360 exclusive. Though, as we know, in the long run that could just mean "PS3 version in the post."

Mercenaries 2: World in Flames
Announced as a PS3 game, Mercs 2 was obviously too good a game to be held to one platform. Indeed, eagle-eyed viewers of an early dev blog could pick up on any one of about a dozen hints toward a 360 version - a 360 pad being used, "360" written on a white board, 360 dev kits everywhere... But who predicted a PS2 version?

Final Fantasy XIII
Another series that helped to raise the PlayStation profile, and another sequel that was commonly expected to be confined to the PlayStation 3. But, alas, fanboys were to be disappointed once more as developer Square Enix revealed that the thirteenth installment wasn't "simply exclusive to PS3."

Saint's Row
An Xbox 360 launch title, publisher THQ dismissed any suggestion of Saint's Row reaching the PS3. Before announcing a PS3 version a few months ago. But THQ soon decided that launching a year-old game wasn't quite as good an idea as working on a bigger, better game, canning the PS3 port and announcing a multiplatform sequel instead.

Kane & Lynch: Dead Men
Like Crossfire, this SCi title was also originally confirmed as a PC and Xbox 360 exclusive - which seems to be Microsoft's favorite kind of open relationship. However, in the last month, SCi has revealed it will also release a PS3 version at the same time, because it'll "benefit long term revenue potential." Money walks, kids.

Is it a PS3 exclusive or not? Half the internet seemed to think it was during last week's Ubidays event, as developer Free Radical demoed the ambitious shooter. But even a petition to make Haze a PS3 exclusive hasn't stopped Free Rad shooting down the possibility - instead, it's a "timed" exclusive, so 360 gamers will have to wait a bit. Poor things.

Tekken 6
Yet another series that the PlayStation faithful take for granted as a Sony-only release. But it might not be like that for long. Rumors on forums reckon that "sources" know that Namco will bring Tekken 6 to the 360. Though, remember, Xbox fans said the same thing about Tekken 5...

May 30, 2007